The 10 Greatest Rock Supergroups of All Time

In the ever-evolving landscape of rock music, the collaboration of exceptional talents has given rise to legendary supergroups that transcend the boundaries of individual bands. These musical alliances, formed by renowned artists joining forces, have produced some of the most iconic and influential sounds in the history of rock. From electrifying performances to chart-topping hits, these supergroups have left an indelible mark on the genre. In this exploration, we delve into the realm of rock’s collaborative powerhouses and count down the 10 greatest rock supergroups of all time, celebrating the magic that ensues when musical virtuosos come together to create something extraordinary.

The List of the 10 Greatest Rock Supergroups of All Time

10. Bad Company

Paul Rodgers (Free), Simon Kirke (Free), Mick Ralphs (Mott the Hoople) and Boz Burrell (King Crimson)

Major Songs:

  • “Bad Company”
  • “Feel Like Makin’ Love”
  • “Can’t Get Enough”
  • “Good Lovin’ Gone Bad”

In 2006, the bassist Boz Burrell passed away. During that summer, despite guitarist Mick Ralphs preferring to stay at home, the band hit the road with Joe Walsh. To fill Ralphs’ spot, they enlisted Rich Robinson from the Black Crowes. Throughout the years, the band has taken several breaks, experiencing various lineup changes. However, they consistently reunite every few years.

9. Audioslave

Chris Cornell (Soundgarden), Tom Morello (Rage Against The Machine), Brad Wilk (Rage Against The Machine) and Tim Commerford (Rage Against The Machine)

Major Songs:

  • “I Am The Highway”
  • “Like a Stone”
  • “Be Yourself”
  • “Doesn’t Remind Me”

In 2006, they disbanded due to what Chris Cornell described as “insurmountable personality clashes and musical disparities.” The following year, Rage Against the Machine reunited, rendering Audioslave less relevant. As Zack de la Rocha once more showed disinterest in rejoining Rage, the remaining members sought collaboration with Chuck D from Public Enemy and B-Real from Cypress Hill. This collaboration resulted in the formation of Prophets of Rage in the current year.

8. The Highwaymen

Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Kris Kristofferson

Major Songs:

  • “Highwayman”
  • “Desperados Waiting for a Train”
  • “Silver Stallion”

Since the release of 1995’s “The Road Goes on Forever,” the group has not produced any new recordings. Unfortunately, both Cash and Jennings have since passed away. Kristofferson’s health has improved significantly in recent years, as it was discovered that he was battling Lyme Disease rather than Alzheimer’s. However, despite these developments, it appears that the journey for the Highwaymen has reached its conclusion.

7. Mad Season

Mike McCready (Pearl Jam), Layne Staley (Alice In Chains), Barrett Martin (Screaming Trees) and John Baker Saunders (The Walkabouts)

Major Songs:

  • “River of Deceit”
  • “I Don’t Know Anything”
  • “Long Gone Day”

The short-lived existence of the Seattle supergroup was primarily influenced by Staley’s escalating drug addiction and Pearl Jam’s demanding schedule of tours and recording. Saunders succumbed to a drug overdose in 1999, with Staley following suit three years later. In 2015, McCready and Martin joined forces with Chris Cornell and Duff McKagan to pay tribute to the group’s music through a performance at Benaroya Hall in Seattle.

6. Blind Faith

Eric Clapton (Cream), Ginger Baker (Cream), Steve Winwood (Traffic) and Ric Grech (Family)

Major Songs:

  • “Can’t Find My Way Home”
  • “Presence of the Lord”
  • “Had to Cry Today”

Following a solitary tour in 1969, Eric Clapton became disenchanted with the supergroup lifestyle and opted to join Delaney and Bonnie. Grech passed away in 1990, and a true reunion of the group has not materialized. However, in 2009, Clapton and Winwood embarked on a joint tour, featuring a setlist brimming with Blind Faith classics.

5. Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young

David Crosby (The Byrds), Graham Nash (The Hollies), Stephen Stills (Buffalo Springfield) and Neil Young (Buffalo Springfield)

Major Songs:

  • “Ohio”
  • “Teach Your Children”
  • “Carry On”
  • “Deja Vu”

They weathered prison, the challenges of hard drugs, persistent personality conflicts, and an underwhelming reunion record in the 1980s. However, in 2015, the breaking point occurred when David Crosby couldn’t resist making disparaging remarks about Neil Young’s girlfriend, Daryl Hannah, and Graham Nash’s new partner, Amy Grantham. Despite these issues, their 50th anniversary is only three years away, and a lucrative offer for a reunion tour might prompt them to set aside their differences. Only time will reveal the outcome.

4. Them Crooked Vultures

Dave Grohl (Nirvana, Foo Fighters), Josh Homme (Queens of the Stone Age) and John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin)

Major Songs:

  • “New Fang”
  • “Mind Eraser, No Chaser”
  • “No One Loves Me and Neither Do I”

In 2009, the band unveiled a self-titled album and embarked on a global tour until 2010. However, they have maintained a low profile since then. Grohl and Homme are undoubtedly occupied with various commitments, but they express a desire to work on another Them Crooked Vultures album at some juncture. While it’s uncertain if it will materialize, the prospect seems more plausible than a Led Zeppelin reunion tour.

3. Temple of the Dog

Chris Cornell (Soundgarden), Jeff Ament (Pearl Jam), Mike McCready (Pearl Jam), Stone Gossard (Pearl Jam) and Matt Cameron (Soundgarden, Pearl Jam)

Major Songs:

  • “Hunger Strike”
  • “Say Hello 2 Heaven”
  • “Reach Down”

Originally conceived as a singular tribute to Mother Love Bone’s frontman, Andy Wood, their sole album has evolved into a grunge classic. In celebration of its 25th anniversary, the band is set to embark on its inaugural tour in the fall.

2. Cream

Eric Clapton (Yardbirds), Ginger Baker (Graham Bond Organization) and Jack Bruce (Manfred Mann)

Major Songs:

  • “White Room”
  • “Sunshine of Your Love”
  • “I’m So Glad”

Before Cream, Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker were already bandmates with significant tension between them. The situation escalated when Cream was formed, and Eric Clapton decided to disband them in 1968. Although they reunited for a few shows in 2005, age didn’t prevent Bruce and Baker from reigniting old conflicts, including an onstage squabble at Madison Square Garden. Bruce’s passing in 2014 marked the end of any possibility for further Cream activity.

1. Traveling Wilburys

Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, Roy Orbison, Jeff Lynne and George Harrison

Major Songs:

  • “Handle With Care”
  • “End of the Line”
  • “She’s My Baby”

Shortly after the release of the group’s debut album in 1988, Roy Orbison passed away. They released one more album in 1990, but the absence of Orbison made it clear that things weren’t the same, leading to the dissolution of the group. The brief tenure was such that they never even performed live. Following Harrison’s death in 2001, the surviving members dwindled to three, making it challenging to envision the Traveling Wilburys ever playing together again. Nevertheless, Lynne and Petty occasionally include Wilburys tunes in their individual performances.


As we wrap up our journey through the annals of rock history, it’s abundantly clear that the allure of supergroups lies not just in the amalgamation of individual brilliance but in the alchemy that transforms their combined talents into timeless sonic masterpieces. Each entry on this list of the 10 greatest rock supergroups represents a unique chapter in the evolution of rock music, showcasing the power of collaboration and the enduring impact these alliances have had on the genre. From the electrifying riffs of guitar virtuosos to the soulful harmonies of iconic vocalists, these supergroups have left an indelible mark on the musical landscape, proving that when extraordinary talents converge, the result is nothing short of legendary. As we reflect on their collective legacy, we are reminded that the magic of rock transcends the confines of individual bands, echoing through time as a testament to the boundless possibilities of artistic collaboration in the world of music.

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